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In the pipeline: An artist's impression of a new Frankton Rd hotel

A luxury $60 million hotel is proposed for one of Queenstown’s largest undeveloped sites.

Auckland-based Shundi Customs has applied for consent for a five- to six-star, 68-room hotel on Frankton Road, less than a kilometre from the CBD.

It’s two-and-a-half levels above Frankton Rd but five levels on its southern side, because the site slopes down towards the lake.

Shundi Customs, owned by Auckland and Chinese shareholders, last year bought the 4656 square metre site, which is surrounded by visitor accommodation, for over $10.4m.

The same company last year received resource consent for a 52-storey apartment tower in the Auckland CBD, at the time touted as New Zealand’s highest residential tower.

The Queenstown hotel’s designed by Dunedin-based Ashley Muir, whose firm, Wales & Mason Architects, produced two earlier plans for the site.

“The clients are experienced hotel operators and they are serious about putting a very good hotel into Queenstown,” Muir says.

“It’s their opinion, and that of other people, that the best hotels there, with the possible exception of Eichardt’s, aren’t at that level.”

He says his clients may operate the hotel themselves – “that’s what they do, they build hotels and run them in China”.

According to the resource consent application, the hotel comprises 65 “generously-sized” guest rooms, and three two-bedroom guest apartments.

There’s a 350-capacity restaurant on the Frankton Rd ground floor, or third floor level on the southern side.

There are meeting and conference rooms and a restaurant and lobby “with [a] reflecting pond beneath”.

On the basement level there are 51 carparks – above what’s required by planning rules – with valet parking.

There are also two coach drop-off and pick-up parks, below the porte cochere.

The hotel largely meets the ‘restricted discretionary’ 15m height limit in the proposed district plan, compared to the current 8m limit.

The exception is a 0.6m protrusion “along a sliver of the roof”‘.

Kelly Bray, who operates the neighbouring Alexis Motel, notes that the hotel will “fire quite a good shadow across to us”.

He says a layer of people living above Frankton Rd will lose their views if it goes to 15m.